Wednesday, March 02, 2016

facing dragons --

What IS INSIDE me really ?
Most of my life I did not dare to look.
Lots of darkness probably.
I peeked a few times, then slammed the lid down hard.   
“It’s dangerous…. There be dragons !!!”
It might be too much to handle.

"Darkness is only the name we give the unknown, grasshopper.”
“Yes master. But I’m still afraid of the dark.”
“Then bring light to it.”
“Easy for you to say. I can pretend, but I’m still afraid of the dark, no matter what you say. I can’t help it.”
“Why not do it anyway ? You love doing things you are not supposed to ? You love rebelling, so why not rebel against your fear ? ”
Wow, that was clever. He got me there. I did love rebelling and doing things I wasn’t supposed to.
“How ? I can’t just light a candle and walk into it can I ?”  

The master looked at me, and said nothing for the rest of the day.
Then over tea, as we looked out over the desert sunset he continued as if no time had passed.
“The candle of consciousness”.
I’ve avoided this all my life because …..because, well, …  it was hard and unpleasant and I didn’t want to know about the  dark side of myself.
Other people had dark sides.   
The world had a dark side.
I worked hard to fight the darkness out there in the world.
But me ? a dark side ?
“Ehhh he he …. well ok, yea I guess I’m not perfect…. there’s probably a bit of darkness in me here and there.  But hey, who’s perfect?

There are great battles against the darkness to be fought out there in the world, no time to sit and look at my own small darkness….”
Right ?
I knew the master would not agree.
You’re just ‘shouting for silence’ he would say, he doesn’t like the idea of fighting to make the world a better place. He’s old, should get out more, see the world, but I can’t tell him that.
So I didn’t say anything to him for the rest of the evening.

-> 10 years later:

Well it took me a long long time and then  I DID look and at some of the darkness in myself, ....yep, pretty dark, pretty bad.
I looked at my darkness, without judgement (as much as I could).
I did the watching and observing without rejecting what I saw, without clinging to what I saw.
I let the light consciousness shine on the unknown areas in myself (i.e. the darkness), and tried not to force any result.
I did all that for a few days and then forgot about it.

The next day something surprising happened.

I felt love, connection with myself.
I felt love for myself.
Like wtf ?
I’m used to feeling crappy deep down, because I know I’m definitely not perfect. No one’s perfect and all that jazz… .

I had not expected feeling love, not for myself, and not for others.
I didn’t deserve love.
I wasn’t perfect yet, the love had come too soon.  
But there it was.
I felt love, for myself, for others.

Why didn’t I expect it ?
Well because I dare only expect things I can control.
Oh I see: And because I don’t control it, I can’t expect it.
I can’t force the feeling of love to come, so I don’t count on it, I forget about it.
It is outside my controlled reality.  
Therefore I don’t think about it at all,
and I forget about it.
I only believe in my own will, and myself…. “Isn’t that pretty lonely ?”
“Yes, come to think of it, it is.”

In my culture, in my world, we reject anything we cannot control, or at least we don’t count on it, we might be ‘prepared for it’ like one is prepared for a disaster.

But life is relationship, and relationship is being with ‘the other’.
The other that is other, BECAUSE it is not me, is not under my control or knowledge.

Yet we fear ‘that other’ - and at the same time we yearn for it.

“Why yearn for it ?”
“Because in ‘the other’, ‘the new’, ‘that which is not I, and yet is I’ there lies love, relating, meaning and all that truly makes life worth living.”
In a machine, all is known, controlled and as it should be.
Do I want to relate to a machine ?
Then why do I try to make others into machines, control them, reduce them to narrow paths of the known ?
Why ?
What do we fear ?
Why do I fear the bright light of life ?
...the adventure ?
....the joy…. ?
….the unknown, unpredictable …?
“I fear all that, for the same reason I fear looking inside myself…”

We make laws, erect walls, defences, surveillance…. to defend ourselves from what ?
“From ourselves.”
“That is ridiculous, Master. Afraid of myself ?”
He said nothing, just looked at me.
I knew, he would not argue, with me if I didn’t want to see the truth.

“Same darkness, isn’t it? “ I looked up at the Master.
He smiled.

“Yes you who must leave everything that you cannot control.
It begins with your family, but soon it comes around to your soul.
Well I've been where you're hanging, I think I can see how you're pinned:
When you're not feeling holy, your loneliness says that you've sinned.

from: "Sisters Of Mercy"
by Leonard Cohen.

Pathwork  Lecture 141: To the extent that deliberate destructiveness is unconscious and therefore cannot be given up, happiness cannot be embraced. When you comprehend the deliberate destructiveness and in what form it exists (not necessarily in action, but perhaps predominantly in hidden emotions, which can only lead to indirect corresponding actions as well as to vague thoughts and half-conscious wishes), when this is concisely crystallized in your consciousness, then you will immediately understand what blocks you.

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